As any good set of study tips will tell you, taking breaks can play a vital part in a successful revision regimen. And what better way to take a break than watching an episode of a good TV show?
But be warned: it’s important to pick the right show. Choose something too immersive, and you’ll find yourself falling down the Netflix-binge rabbit hole; choose something too boring, and it won’t feel like a break at all!
To help you out, here are four of my tried-and-tested revision-break recommendations:
- Brooklyn Nine-Nine
Set in the 99th precinct of the NYPD, Brooklyn Nine-Nine is the perfect sitcom to watch to unwind. Each episode is self-contained, so there’s no fear of an unfinished storyline getting in the way of your revision – but the great comedy and character development arcs will keep you motivated through to the next break.
Speaking of the characters, they’re all extremely loveable, from top detective and man-child, Jake Peralta (Andy Samberg), to the stoic, newly appointed Captain Holt (Andre Braugher).
But it’s Amy Santiago (Melissa Fumero) who will really help you through the exam period: her determination to be the best of the best, along with her love of paperwork and near-sexual attraction to office supplies, makes her a true inspiration to any revising student.
- Fresh Meat
If you aren’t up to date with the final season of Fresh Meat yet, now is the perfect time to get on it.
The hit Channel 4 comedy follows a group of students sharing a house in Manchester, as they get up to all kinds of hilarious hijinks. Drinking, partying, having affairs with professors, accidentally drilling a hole through someone’s face during a practical… You know, all the usual student stuff.
In Season 4, the housemates are facing their final year, and things are getting a bit too close to home. Will they find jobs after uni? Will they graduate with the grades they want? Will they graduate at all? If it doesn’t entertain you, at least it will stress you into doing some studying.
- Shadowhunters: The Mortal Instruments
When your brain is fried from all the revision, sometimes you just want to watch a show that’s mindlessly entertaining. And the latest adaptation of Cassandra Clare’s YA book series is certainly that.
When Clary’s (Katherine McNamara) mother is kidnapped, Clary discovers that she belongs to an underworld of mythical beings, demons, and (very attractive) demon hunters. It’s just as unapologetically awful as it sounds: think Buffy, but with slightly advanced special effects, and slightly patchier acting talent.
This is one of those shows that will engross you for every action-packed second of an episode, but which requires little mental effort to appreciate. You’ll be left with the certainty that you’ve spent your break doing nothing even remotely approaching productivity.
- Ugly Betty
Finally, you’re probably already familiar with Ugly Betty, but sometimes re-watching an old favourite is just as good as finding something new.
This sitcom is a real feel-good classic, following Betty Suarez (America Ferrera) as she tries to make it in the world of fashion journalism. It’s impossible to watch an episode without being cheered up, thanks to the over-the-top storylines, the cheesy dialogue, and its nostalgic appeal.
The true heart of Ugly Betty, of course, is Betty herself – a driven and optimistic woman who won’t stop until she’s achieved her dreams. Listen: if Betty was brave enough to turn up to her first day at Mode wearing that poncho, you’re brave enough to take on your exams!